You’re probably not going to like this, but this is a very hard one.
This was difficult to write, and that is why it took a couple of days to get it up here.
Please Bear with me,
It was the next day, a day Sharon would never forget as long as she lived. She sat in the livingroom nursing Billy in the glider. Becky sat reading a book, occasionally breaking out into soft laughter at what she was reading. Rick was at work as usual at this time of day.
At eleven thirty the doorbell rang, and Becky said “I’ll get it.” as she got up to answer the door.
A moment later, a police officer and a woman entered the livingroom. Sharon had just reached for Billy’s blanket when they entered the room, so all of her breast but the nipple that Billy was nursing on was exposed. Covering up, she looked to the woman and asked “Who are you and what are you doing in my home?”.
“Mrs. Avery, I’m Elena Thompson, and this,” Ms. Thompson told her, holding out a piece of folded paper, “is a court order to remove the children from the home. Please don’t make this any harder than it has to be.”.
Sharon asked “What is going on? Why would anyone want to take our children?”.
“Mrs. Avery, you’re nursing your nine year old son. I originally was sent here to interview you and the children, but I saw all that I needed to see when I walked in. Now please just hand me Billy, and we can get this over with.” Elena explained.
“He’s functionally an infant, and I am doing what the doctors and nurses at the hospital told me to do.” Sharon said starting to get frightened.
“I’m sorry Mrs. Avery, but he’s going to go with us. You can give him to me, or we can take him from you, but he will come with us now.” Elena told her with a tone that left no room to negotiate.
Sharon didn’t know what to make of this. It was surreal. “Where is my daughter?” she asked noticing then that Becky didn’t come back in the house.
“She’s sitting in a police cruiser out front. Now please hand me Billy.” Ms. Thompson informed her.
Sharon, afraid now, said softly “Please don’t take my little boy.” with tears streaming down her face.
“I’m sorry Mrs. Avery, I have to.” as she approached Sharon.
When Elena reached out to pick Billy up, Sharon pulled him closer to her. “No, please.” she begged through her tears.
Elena looked her in the eye and said quietly, “If you give him to me, then you can put some things together for him. He will need clothes and things. If I have to take him, he will leave here with what he’s wearing. If you care about the boy, give him to me, and get some things together for him.” with a determined expression.
Billy opened his eyes when Mommy broke the seal on her nipple. He fussed, he wasn’t done, he wanted more of Mommy’s milk. With his hearing as bad as it was, and one ear pressed against Mommy’s arm, Billy hadn’t heard any of what had transpired. When Mommy gave him his Binky, he looked up at her to find out what she was doing. When he saw her crying, he started to cry.
Mommy kissed him on the forehead and told him “I love you Baby, I love you so much.” and lifted him up and held him out in front of her. Billy felt someone else take him in their arms, and started to cry in earnest.
Billy looked at Mommy and said “Who is this? What is happening?” through his tears, making nothing but baby sounds. This frustrated him more, and he cried harder.
Sharon looked at Billy and told him “I’m sorry Baby, you’re going to have to go with Ms. Thompson.” through her tears, trying to make him understand.
“Get some things for him while I get him in the car.” Ms. Thompson said.
Billy not understanding said “Please Mommy! Please don’t let her take me! Please Mommy, don’t send me away! Please, I’ll be good! I promise!” as Ms Thompson walked to the front door. The only part anyone understood was ‘Mommy’. When Billy was carried out the door he started screaming and thrashing to get out of this woman’s arms.
Ms. Thompson pulled him into a tight embrace, and continued toward the car. She had been told his size so they had a carseat ready for him. She buckled Billy into the seat despite his screaming and thrashing.
Sharon’s whole world was collapsing at once. She couldn’t believe this was actually happening. She quickly got Billy’s diaper bag packed with diapers, two bottles of formula and three binkies. Two sleepers and four cloth diapers went in the bag as well. She added eight bags of formula to the bag and went out to the livingroom to give the bag to Ms. Thompson. When she got there, the livingroom was empty. Running to the front yard, she saw that the cars and her children were gone.
It occurred to her that she never got a chance to even say goodbye to Becky. Sobbing uncontrollably she got on the phone, dialing Rick’s cell number.
“Hello?” Rick said as he answered.
“Rick…their gone…their gone….” was all Sharon could get out between sobs before she became unable to speak.
“Honey?” Rick asked. “Whats wrong? Who’s gone?” he asked, a cold feeling in the pit of his stomach.
“The kids.” Was all that she answered and started crying once again.
“I’ll be right there.” Rick said as he was walking from his office. “Talk to me Honey, I need to know what happened. I can’t help if you don’t talk to me.” he told her.
“Social Services came and took Billy and Becky away.” she managed before more sobs prevented conversation.
Rick felt fear creep up his spine. “Why?” he asked her.
“Because I was nursing Billy!” Sharon wailed, feeling huge amounts of guilt at losing her children from something she did.
He didn’t get much more from Sharon after that. All she could do was cry. By this time, Rick was in the car on the way home.
Seventeen minutes later, he was running through the front door of the house. He saw his wife sitting on the floor hugging her knees, crying. Going to her, he wrapped his arms around her and spoke soft words. After three or four minutes, he lifted her and carried her to the bedroom and laid her on the bed. “Just lay here while I call Frank.” he told her softly.
Becky was crying her eyes out. The policeman sitting in the front seat wouldn’t tell her anything. She was scared and wanted her daddy. She tried to open the door of the car, but there was no handle. She started screaming for her daddy, and the officer looked at her and told her to be quiet. She was so frightened by his expression, she instantly stopped making noise. The officer continued to talk to her, and the more he said, the harder she sobbed.
The other door opened and Becky saw a lady put Billy in the carseat next to her. Billy was screaming and crying, flailing his little arms and legs all over. Once the harness was buckled, the lady closed the door and got in the front passenger seat, and the officer backed out of the driveway and the car drove up the street.
Becky watched her home get smaller through the back window as they got further away. Tears streamed down her cheeks as she watched the house disappear.
Scooting closer to Billy, she tried to calm him down, but he wouldn’t respond to anything she said. Looking all over, she couldn’t find his binky. Then she noticed they didn’t have his diaper bag. “Where’s his binky?” she asked the woman through her tears.
“He shouldn’t have a pacifier Honey, he’s nine years old.” Ms. Thompson told her.
“He needs his binky!” Becky screamed at her. “Give it back!” she yelled.
“I didn’t see a pacifier Becky, it must have gotten lost when I brought him out.” Ms. Thompson responded. She reached for a pen, and felt the shape of the pacifier in her pocket as she did. “A nine year old has no business nursing on a pacifier” she thought. If it meant this would be a loud ride to the emergency shelter, then she would endure it.
Billy had no idea why his mommy would want to give him to this woman, or why she would let the woman take him away from his home. He was screaming and flailing as she carried him toward the car. As his arms tired, he stopped trying to hit her. No sooner did he rest his arms then she reached up and took his pacifier clip off his sleeper. In the process he saw the binky move into and then out of his sight.
This terrified the poor child. He screamed all the louder, saying ‘Bink’ several times. She leaned close and told him “You’re a big boy Billy, you don’t belong with a pacifier.” and continued to walk toward the car.
Billy was frantic by this point, screaming at the top of his lungs, thrashing for all he was worth. He was beyond speech, beyond reason, terrified to be away from his mommy, and wanting the comfort of his binky. When he was laid down in the carseat, he kicked and flailed his arms trying to prevent the woman from buckling him in. By the time they were driving down the road, he was so upset, he couldn’t hear his sister’s attempts to comfort him.
When they had gone five miles from the house his head was hurting severely, which added to his screaming. A moment later, the pain became intense, and he just slumped quiet in the carseat, no longer making a sound.
Becky looked quickly over and saw he wasn’t moving. Frightened at this sudden change, she reached over and tried to wake him by shaking him and calling his name several times. “Somethings wrong!” she told Ms. Thompson.
Ms. Thompson slid the window open between the front and the back and reached to shake Billy to wake him. When her hand touched his face and it was cool and damp, she said “Shit! Get to the hospital, NOW!” and checked to see if Billy was breathing. She noticed his breaths were shallow, reached to find his pulse and felt that it was very rapid. “Move it!” she yelled at the officer. They tore off down the road with the siren blaring headed to the emergency room.
The officer called the dispatcher, having her contact the ER to let them know they were coming. Five minutes later the cruiser pulled up to the ER doors, and Billy was taken inside. Becky tried to go with them into the hospital, but was kept in the back of the car sobbing as she wondered what was wrong with Billy and if he would be OK.
Billy was in the ER for only three and a half minutes before someone called Peter. He was listed as Billy’s doctor and the ER physician wanted to talk with him about his recent stay. Because there was no parent there, they had no one to get a history from, and looking it up in his old chart would take time they didn’t have.
Peter answered his cell phone “Dr. Richardson.”.
“Hi Peter, this is George in the ER. I have a patient of yours here and need some information on him. His name is Billy Avery.” Dr. Angstrom told peter.
“Billy? What’s wrong? Where is his mother Sharon?” he asked quickly.
“I don’t know, but Social Services just brought him in. He’s tachycardic and his breathing is shallow. We’re about to intubate him and I need some background to know how to treat him.” George answered.
“Social Services? George I’ll be there in two minutes.” Peter said and ran for the stairway as he hung up his cell.
When Peter came running into the ER, he saw George talking with a woman in her thirties. “Where is Billy?” he asked George.
Ms. Thompson looked at him and asked “Are you Billy’s doctor?”.
“Yes, I’m his neurologist. He just had major surgery about six days ago. What is going on? Where is Sharon?” he asked her.
“The children have been removed from the home, Dr. Richardson. We got a complaint that Billy was being made to dress and act like a baby. When I got to the home, Mrs. Avery was nursing him at her breast.” she told him with a very distasteful look.
“I don’t know who you are lady, but Sharon was given specific instruction to nurse that boy. He needs the antibodies in her milk, AND he needed the comfort due to the surgery leaving him in a very unusual state. She wasn’t forcing him to act like a baby, he IS a baby for all practical purposes. Don’t you people check things out before you go pulling children from their homes?” he asked angrily.
“I am doing my job doctor. Now leave us to finish this paperwork.” she told him indignantly.
Peter tried to control his temper, but looked at George and said “I want Billy admitted to the ICU right now George.”
“We haven’t even stabilized him yet.” George said.
“Where is he? I will take charge of his care from here.” Peter answered.
“He’s in bed four.” George said handing him the papers.
“You are not to care for this child Dr. Richardson, you are part of the problem.” Ms. Thompson told him.
He took a step toward her and looked her in the eye. “I don’t know who the hell you are, and I don’t give a damn. Until you have a court order preventing me from caring for Billy, he will be under my care while he’s here. Now get out of my face lady, and if I were you, I would be worried about a homicide charge right about now. You better hope nothing bad happens to that little boy.” he told her with a growl, and turned, running to get to Billy as soon as possible.
Elena stood there, the color drained from her face. She had worked with social services for ten years and never got an assignment like this before. She hoped the boy was alright, but she felt she had done the right thing with the information she had. Until she had proof otherwise, Becky needed a home for the next couple of days until a hearing was scheduled.
Becky didn’t say another word when Ms. Thompson got back in the cruiser and they left the hospital. She sat somberly, watching out the window. Her whole life had changed in a moment. She didn’t know what to expect now.
Fifteen minutes later, the car pulled up at a house on the other side of town. Becky was taken by the hand to the door and told this is where she would be staying for now. When an older lady opened the door, she smiled at Becky, trying to make things easier on the girl.
“Becky, this is Mrs. Kelsey. You will be staying with her for a while. You need to behave while you’re here or we will have to move you to a facility instead of a home, do you understand?” Ms. Thompson explained.
Becky just nodded her head. She was tired of fighting, it didn’t do any good.
“Come on in Becky.” Mrs. Kelsey told her and stood back from the door.
Becky walked inside and stood in a hallway waiting to be told what to do next.
“Come on into the livingroom, you can watch some TV for a bit while Ms. Thompson and I talk.” Mrs. Kelsey explained.
Becky sat down on the couch and the two women left the room. She watched the TV for a bit, but wasn’t interested in watching. She just wanted to sleep. It had been a terrible day and she didn’t want to interact with anyone at this point. She laid down and closed her eyes. She wished Charley Bear was here. She wouldn’t have him anymore, and this brought tears to her eyes. Before long, she was sleeping fitfully, occasionally crying out “Daddy” softly in her sleep.